Metro Division Title Would Be Nice, But Not Necessary

Florida Panthers v Carolina Hurricanes
Florida Panthers v Carolina Hurricanes / Grant Halverson/GettyImages

The NHL regular season is approaching the end and the Carolina Hurricanes are once again in the mix for the Metro Division title. The playoffs are approaching and it is difficult to not look ahead toward matchups. After winning the division two years in a row, it would not be the worst thing to finish in second place.

The beauty of finishing at the top of the division or the conference is the possibility of having home-ice advantage throughout the playoffs. PNC Arena has been kind to the Canes with a solid 22-9-4 record in Raleigh. However, away from home has been just as solid with a 21-11-2 record.

Last season, the Eastern Conference Finals began in Raleigh but we all know the result of that series. Some say home-ice advantage is not real but it is hard to argue against playing in front of your fans.

The Boston Bruins seem to be in line for the top seed in the Conference with 97 points currently. Not a guarantee but it's certainly a big hill to climb for the Canes to guarantee themselves home ice throughout the playoffs. So why not be fine with second place?

Carolina is in no fear of falling to third place in the division so the first round of the playoffs will surely be in Raleigh to start. The potential opponents for the third spot in the Metro Division seem much more vulnerable than the Wild Card teams as a potential first-round nemesis. The Philadelphia Flyers, New York Islanders, and Washington Capitals are in the mix. Not one of those clubs is a world-beater.

The Canes are 1-0-1 against the Capitals, 2-1 against the Flyers, and 2-1-1 against the Islanders.

The ticket to the dance is all that really matters this time of year. Winning a division is nice, but it hasn't played out the way the Canes wanted the last two years. Every person in the organization would take a Stanley Cup over another Metro Division champions banner.